Angelino is showing the benefits of working under Pep Guardiola after he stole the show in RB Leipzig's 2-0 win over Istanbul Basaksehir in the Champions League, says Julian Nagelsmann. 

The Spaniard, playing left midfield, scored twice at Red Bull Arena – the first of which was a result of a glorious takedown and spin that Nagelsmann described as "world class". 

Angelino came through the youth ranks at Manchester City and spent time in the first team as well as going out on a spate of loan spells, the latest of which took him to Leipzig in January in a temporary deal that was extended for the 2020-21 season with a purchase option included. 

In total Angelino scored from two of his three shots on goal and provided a key pass, while he also gained possession of the ball six times for a Leipzig side that actually had less possession. 

Nagelsmann was full of praise for Angelino's performance, talking up the influence of City boss Guardiola on his development.

"Angelino is only unpleasant when he doesn't play, which only happened twice this year. That pretty much describes his character," Leipzig coach Nagelsmann said.  

"I think Yussi [Yussuf Poulsen] agrees, that he only wants to win. He is like a child that just wants to play all the time. He is almost as bad as me. I'm always playing around with a ball.  

"But he just always wants to have the ball and you see him constantly shooting it. After training he wants to continue. He has a massive playing instinct and he just wants to win all the time and play around with a ball.  

"I have to admit, he arrived after working under a great manager. I can't just praise myself. He came as a well-developed player.  

"We haven't brought many players in from Pep Guardiola, yet, so we can't draw a comparison. But his adaption time was minimal, as he arrived from a great team and a great manager, who surely taught him something.  

"He is inquisitive, listens and implements things, as he is a great footballer with an instinct to play.  

"He wants to work all the time and Yussi is like that too. So you adapt and show great results. To score his first goal today is world class."

Andrea Pirlo described Pep Guardiola as a "model for the whole football movement" and admits he never dreamed he would one day be coaching Cristiano Ronaldo. 

Italy great Pirlo has taken his first steps into coaching with Juventus this season and his side have eight points from his four Serie A games in charge. 

There are some parallels to be drawn with Guardiola, who cut his managerial teeth at Barcelona – initially with Los Cules' B team before going on to oversee one of the greatest sides of any generation with a star-studded cast including Lionel Messi, Xavi and Andres Iniesta. 

He consequently went on to coach Bayern Munich before joining Manchester City in 2016 and Pirlo sees Guardiola as an example for any rookie coach. 

"Guardiola is an example for all of us, he is one of the best. He gave a way forward for young coaches who wanted to promote a certain type of offensive football," Pirlo told 

"Each of us has his own ideas and wants to carry them forward, but he is certainly a model for the whole football movement.  

"I like his style of play: always attacking and influencing the game in order to always manage situations. This must be our goal for the future." 

At Juve, Pirlo has Portugal superstar Ronaldo among his ranks – a player considered one of the greatest of all time. 

During his career, Ronaldo has lifted the Champions League five times, claimed domestic titles in England, Spain and Italy and is a five-time Ballon d'Or winner. 

Pirlo spoke of the pride he feels at working with a player of his calibre. 

"No, I never would have imagined it, but I am happy to have a great football player available and to see him train and play. For me and for the whole team it is a great pleasure," he added.  

"At 35 he works like a young boy, with the same passion and the desire to commit himself every day. He is an example for everyone." 

Sergio Aguero must prove he deserves a new contract at Manchester City, manager Pep Guardiola warned.

Aguero returned following a four-month absence due to a knee injury as City recorded a 1-0 win at home to Arsenal in the Premier League on Saturday.

But the forward, who is City's all-time leading goalscorer, is out of contract at the end of the season and Guardiola said Aguero had a point to prove if he was to earn a new deal.

"Sergio now has to show, like every one of us, that he deserves to continue here – keep playing well, scoring goals and winning games – and after that the club and I will decide," Guardiola told reporters.

"But if he is playing in his level we don't have any doubts that he is a player to stay until he decides because he is unique. He is important for us, our fans and everyone.

"But he was out four months and he has to start training regularly and start to score goals – this is the most important thing."

Aguero has won four Premier League titles and numerous other domestic trophies since arriving at City from Atletico Madrid in 2011.

Guardiola is unsurprisingly happy to have the 32-year-old – who scored 16 goals in 24 league games last season – back from injury.

"Having Aguero on the pitch, we are better, we are safer," he said.

"We missed him a lot in the important moments at the end part of last season, but now is good news for us that he is back."

Since Aguero arrived at City in 2011, they have a better win percentage without him than with (70.7 to 67.4) in the Premier League, while on average scoring more often (2.4 to 2.3), as per Opta.

Those numbers are amplified since Guardiola took charge in 2016. Since then, City have won 78.6 per cent of Premier League games without Aguero and 71.9 with him, while scoring 2.7 goals per match when the Argentinian has been absent, compared to 2.4 with him.

City begin their Champions League campaign at home to Porto on Wednesday before making the trip to West Ham three days later.

Everton and Liverpool played out a thrilling and controversial Merseyside derby on Saturday, while Pep Guardiola brought up his 500th managerial win.

Mohamed Salah and Dominic Calvert-Lewin both continued their scoring streaks in a dramatic encounter at Goodison Park, which finished 2-2 in contentious fashion.

Manchester City then saw off Mikel Arteta's Arsenal 1-0, after Chelsea had been pegged back to a 3-3 draw by Southampton, with Manchester United bouncing back from their 6-1 defeat to Tottenham with a comprehensive 4-1 win at Newcastle United in the late match.

Here, using Opta data, take a look at the key stats from Saturday's games.

Everton 2-2 Liverpool: Salah reaches century as Calvert-Lewin keeps on scoring

The reigning champions were humbled against Aston Villa before the international break, though Jurgen Klopp's side responded in force at Goodison Park.

Yet their efforts were not enough to claim a win over their rivals, who had Richarlison sent off late on, with Jordan Henderson's late strike contentiously disallowed by VAR.

Salah netted the 100th goal of his Liverpool career in his 159th appearance to put Liverpool 2-1 up – only Roger Hunt and Jack Parkinson have made it to the century in fewer appearances for the club. 

Salah's partner in crime Sadio Mane opened the scoring early on. It was the Reds' fastest ever goal in a Premier League derby, though Everton have done it quicker in the fixture , with Olivier Dacourt scoring after just one minute in April 1999.

Andrew Robertson provided the assist, the full-back's 14th since the start of the 2018-19 season. Only Kevin De Bruyne (21) has managed more in the English top flight, yet the lead did not last for too long, Michael Keane heading in James Rodriguez's delivery, with the Colombian having set up three league goals for the Toffees so far.

Calvert-Lewin got Everton's second and what proved to be the encounter's final goal, with his 12th headed goal in the top flight since the start of last term.

Having also struck on his England debut, the forward continued his fine start to the campaign, becoming the first Everton player to score in the first five league games of a season since Tommy Lawton, way back in 1938-39. 

Chelsea 3-3 Southampton: Walcott back with a bang

Kai Havertz's first Premier League goal looked set to be enough to secure a 3-2 win for Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, but Jannik Vestergaard snatched a point for Southampton.

Though Timo Werner and Havertz broke their Premier League ducks, becoming the fifth and sixth Germans to score for Chelsea in the competition in the process, Frank Lampard's defensive issues once again came to the fore.

With Danny Ings and Che Adams having already capitalised on defensive lapses, Theo Walcott, making his first Saints appearance in 14 years and 276 days, lashed in a stoppage-time shot which Vestergaard headed in.

It means Southampton have lost just one of their last eight away Premier League games (W4 D3) after losing two in a row directly before that in February.

Chelsea, meanwhile, have conceded an average of 1.5 goals per game in the Premier League under Lampard (63 in 43 games), the Blues' worst rate under any boss to oversee more than one game in the competition.

In the process of getting off the mark in the Premier League, Werner has now scored 30 league goals since the start of last season – only Robert Lewandowski, Ciro Immobile and Cristiano Ronaldo have scored more goals in Europe's top five leagues.

Manchester City 1-0 Arsenal: Sterling brings up Pep's 500th win

Raheem Sterling's fourth goal in his past three games got Manchester City back to winning ways, and sealed a landmark victory for Guardiola in the process.

Sterling sat out England's recent matches with a hamstring issue but was back in action to score midway through the first half in Manchester.

Guardiola has now won 500 games in all competitions as a manager (including Barcelona B), winning 172 as City boss.

City are unbeaten in their last 10 Premier League encounters with Arsenal (W8 D2), since a 1-2 loss in December 2015, though Arteta did guide the Gunners to a win in last season's FA Cup semi-final.

Arsenal are winless in their last 29 Premier League away games against "big six" opponents (D10 L19), however, and have lost each of their last seven top-flight games against City, their longest such run against an opponent since losing seven in a row to Ipswich Town between 1974-1977.

Ederson has kept 53 clean sheets in the Premier League since his debut in August 2017; 15 more than any other goalkeeper in this time, while Sterling has been directly involved in each of City's last five goals in all competitions (four goals, one assist).

Newcastle United 1-4 Manchester United: Fernandes strikes again despite penalty miss

After their dismal defeat to Spurs at Old Trafford, United needed a response, though matters looked bleak when Luke Shaw's early own goal put them behind at Newcastle.

However, Harry Maguire – after a tumultuous time with England – struck back, with Bruno Fernandes missing a penalty before scoring a wonderful goal to restore United's lead.

Fernandes' penalty miss was his first for United on what was his 11th spot-kick since his debut on February 1, with those 11 six more than any other Premier League player has taken in that time.

However, with his goal and subsequent assist for Marcus Rashford, who added a fourth after Aaron Wan-Bissaka had made it 3-1 in emphatic fashion, Fernandes has been directly involved in 20 goals in his 18 Premier League appearances for United (11 goals, nine assists).

Newcastle conceded four goals at home in the Premier League for the first time since April 5, 2014, also against the Red Devils.

United enjoyed their 10th comeback win against Newcastle in the Premier League, the most by any side against a single opponent in the competition, while Steve Bruce's side are now without a clean sheet in seven top-flight games, their longest such run without a shut-out on home soil since February 2014.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side have been awarded 17 penalties in the Premier League since the start of last season, five more than any other side in the competition (12 scored).

With his brilliant strike, Wan-Bissaka became the 116th different player to score for United in the Premier League in what is his 38th league appearance for the club, as Rashford registered three goal involvements in a top-flight match for the third time.

Pep Guardiola felt the manner of Manchester City's 1-0 win over Arsenal will help to rebuild confidence and reserved praise for his defensive unit.

Raheem Sterling scored the only goal after 23 minutes at the Etihad Stadium, converting on the rebound after Bernd Leno blocked Phil Foden's shot.

But City also broke the deadlock in their previous Premier League games against Leicester City and Leeds United, matches that ended in a 5-2 defeat and 1-1 draw respectively.

On Saturday, despite the absence of influential centre-back Aymeric Laporte, Guardiola's side dug in to earn their victory.

Ederson completed a brilliant trio of first-half saves before Arsenal could only manage a solitary shot on target during the second half, when a back three of Kyle Walker, Ruben Dias and Nathan Ake grew in stature.

"It was a tight game as we expected. It was for our heads, so important this victory, for the problems that we have," Guardiola told Sky Sports.

"In the game against Leeds, Ederson made outstanding saves and again today.

"What we have done today, without the ball, defending together. I think Nathan and Ruben were incredible, and Kyle as a central defender.

"We could not train one session on the build-up [with this back three]. We need more time to grow as a team, but it's okay

"I think this game is going to help us to make a step forward."

The result was Guardiola's 500th victory of his coaching career, including his stint in charge of Barcelona B.

Raheem Sterling's fourth goal in his past three games got Manchester City back to winning ways in the Premier League with a 1-0 victory over Arsenal.

Sterling sat out England's games against Wales, Belgium and Denmark with a hamstring niggle but was back in action to score decisively midway through the first half at the Etihad Stadium.

Arsenal, led by Pep Guardiola's former assistant Mikel Arteta, beat City in last season's FA Cup semi-final and again asked plenty of questions of their hosts, for whom goalkeeper Ederson excelled.

But Guardiola's side held on for a timely triumph after taking a solitary point from encounters with Leicester City and Leeds United before the international break.

Riyad Mahrez, stationed on the right of a fluid City attack, was prominently involved in the opening exchanges - firing wide inside the opening minute before digging out a cross for the returning Sergio Aguero to head over.

The former Leicester City favourite's astute in-field pass released Aguero to run at the Arsenal defence in the 23rd minute, with Phil Foden's resulting shot saved by Bernd Leno and tucked home on the rebound by Sterling.

Bukayo Saka danced through the City backline to force a stop from Ederson as Arsenal sought a swift response, although Leno had to be alert to thwart Mahrez at his near post before the half hour and denied Foden after his defence played into trouble.

It was a game to busy both goalkeepers, with Ederson springing into action when Saka and then Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang burst into the City box.

Guardiola sent on Ilkay Gundogan, returning after a positive coronavirus test, in place of Aguero in an attempt to shore up midfield with Arsenal in the ascendancy after the break.

Nevertheless, free-kicks from David Luiz and Nicolas Pepe that did not trouble Ederson were the closest they came.

On an increasingly rare foray forward, City wing-back Joao Cancelo almost forced David Luiz to prod into his own net. In the end, Sterling's solitary strike would prove enough.

Pep Guardiola is confident Bernardo Silva will enjoy a strong season for Manchester City after a below-par 2019-20.

Silva scored for Portugal against Sweden in the Nations League on Wednesday, and received backing from Guardiola ahead of City's clash with Arsenal.

While the playmaker was directly involved in 13 goals last Premier League season – compared to 14 in 2018-19 – he created fewer chances.

Silva created 71 chances, including assists, in 2018-19 and that number dropped to 51 last season, when he played 824 fewer minutes.

Guardiola said the 26-year-old was exhausted last season, having helped City win four domestic trophies and Portugal clinch the Nations League the campaign prior.

"He was injured in some moments and he didn't reach the levels of previous season, but it happens. I've an opinion that if there's one player I have absolutely no doubts about who he is as a football player, it's Bernardo," the City manager told reporters. 

"He played absolutely incredible all season when we won four domestic titles, incredible, then was the best player with Portugal at the UEFA Nations League Finals.

"He didn't have time to refresh, he was exhausted and his mind was exhausted and he struggled with this. It is not because he didn't want it, it was because we demand a lot of the players and sometimes it is not possible.

"In the NBA – the best league in basketball and we can say the Premier League is one of the best in football – they have three or four months break, they play a lot of games – 70 or 80 – but they have three or four months' break."

Guardiola added: "With Bernardo it was like this – he couldn't refresh mentally and started the season tired mentally.

"But I have a feeling he'll have a very good season this season because he's coming back in many things to what we've seen in the past."

Ahead of hosting Arsenal on Saturday, City are 14th in the table after earning just four points from their opening three games.

Jurgen Klopp insisted concern for football was at the heart of the Project Big Picture proposals rejected by Premier League clubs this week. 

The Liverpool boss is glad reform was discussed after the Reds and Manchester United led wide-ranging suggestions that were unanimously rejected, though a bailout for League One and League Two teams was agreed at a virtual meeting. 

Changes to Premier League voting rights, a reduction of the top flight to 18 teams, the abolition of the EFL Cup and alterations to existing funding models for lower league clubs and the Football Association (FA) were all up for debate. 

"It is really important we speak about it because I can't remember the last time we did – the space for improvement in football," Klopp said ahead of Liverpool's derby with Everton on Saturday. 

"A lot of times in life there must be a crisis to start talking. I'm happy people are talking. Yes, competitive [football is] positive, no one wants to change that. 

"I am not really involved. I was informed. What I can say, all the people involved are concerned about football. If you want to understand the idea behind it, you listen, if you do not, you just knock it down.  

"There are things to improve in football and that is what these people tried. The process keeps going and the people are talking and that is positive."

The subject was also raised at a host of other managerial news conferences ahead of the weekend's Premier League action. 

United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said: "It's a definite that we, as one of the bigger clubs, have a responsibility to protect the football pyramid or smaller clubs.  

"We have seen lately the impact this pandemic has had on many smaller clubs. For me, a key thing is that we want to get the fans back into the stadiums, which will help the other clubs.  

"I'm very glad we're looking into trying to help and the talks have started - let's make the powers that be decide how we're going to do that." 

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola and Chelsea's Frank Lampard also had their say on the topic. 

"I want the best for football," said Guardiola. "I didn't listen to the hypothetical suggestions, I'm a big fan of the low categories, but honestly I don't know what the situation is.  

"I remember being with Barcelona and here in England arrived the Premier League. There was an incredible amount of criticism about the Premier League, that it wouldn't be good and what was before should've stayed.  

"And after look what happened with the Premier League, it's now maybe the best league in the world.  

"I just want the best for football, making the Premier League as strong as possible – now it's not possible in this pandemic - but also for the low categories, because the old towns and little villages love their teams and that is the point."  

Lampard, who was asked if it is was a mess at the top of football, said: "I won't use the word 'mess' but I think if you look across society and what COVID has done to the world, we're all in difficult, difficult times, so I don't want to be too critical of that.  

"People are trying to find solutions all the time. With the actual football picture, I haven't paid enough attention to give you details but Chelsea have remained - I think since the lockdown - [doing] some of the great work we did. 

"We're certainly intent on making sure we're involved in conversations around protecting the football pyramid, and grassroots all the way up through the EFL and to the Premier League. 

"We'll be very involved in those conversations when needed, as we always are, and try to do the best."

Kevin De Bruyne is set to miss a number of games for Manchester City due to injury, Pep Guardiola announced on Friday.

Midfield maestro De Bruyne went off in the second half of Belgium's 2-1 loss to England last weekend and sat out their 2-1 victory over Iceland on Wednesday.

Guardiola confirmed ahead of Saturday's meeting with Arsenal that the 29-year-old is set for a spell on the sidelines, though he was unsure exactly how long it will be.

Asked about the condition of his players after they returned from the international break, Guardiola said: "Everyone came back a little bit better than the time before, because the previous time [Joao] Cancelo, Bernardo Silva and other were injured and couldn't play the beginning of the season.

"Unfortunately Kevin is out, but the rest they came back well. I don't think [De Bruyne's injury] is much, but for the next games he will be out."

The City boss acknowledged that injuries are inevitable with the congested schedule and did not blame the international fixtures for the loss of De Bruyne.

"I never complain about the international games. I know how important it is for the players to play for their countries, it's an honour and a privilege," Guardiola said.

"UEFA and FIFA defend their own tournaments. We always want players to come back fit but sometimes they can get injured training with us. I am more of the opinion that players are injured because we demand so much of them after tough seasons.

"That's why there arrives a moment when the body says it's enough and they go down injured.

"Bernardo and the other players, Joao, they could not have a normal pre-season, they were injured, to get rhythm in these games was good for them."

City have been without all-time leading goalscorer Sergio Aguero since June due to a knee injury but he could make his first appearance of the season against Arsenal.

However, Gabriel Jesus, who has missed each of the team's past four matches, will continue to sit out.

"Sergio is training well and we're happy," Guardiola said. "Every team needs a striker, and we played without them in the first days. He's been training well and we're happy to see him back on the pitch after a long, long time.

"[Jesus] was injured. In some muscles you can take a risk and there are others where you cannot. He has an injury in the front part of his leg. If there was another incident we would lose him for a very long time. I don't know [how long he will be out]."

Saturday's game at the Etihad Stadium will see Guardiola go up against his former assistant Mikel Arteta, who has impressed the Catalan with his work in north London.

"Maybe we should clarify who is the master and who is the apprentice?" said Guardiola.

"We didn't have any doubts about what he's doing in a short period. He's settled really well and the way his team is playing right now is perfect for the quality they have.

"He was able to get Arsenal back in the position they were a long, long time ago. He's doing really well in all competitions and he's a competitor, a fighter, [with] clear things on the pitch.

"All the people who love him are more than happy with what he's doing in London."

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola was disappointed to lose Mikel Arteta from his backroom staff and following his start to life at Arsenal it is easy to see why.

While Arteta was unable to guide Arsenal into the top six in the Premier League last season, he secured Europa League qualification by winning his first trophy less than eight months into the job in the form of the FA Cup.

It is not just silverware that has appeased a large section of the Gunners faithful, though. It is a club favourite returning and attempting to implement a style of football that supporters became accustomed to during the illustrious reign of Arsene Wenger.

With an aesthetically pleasing approach, Arsenal are once again looking capable of mixing it with the best teams in the Premier League.

A serious test of their mettle awaits on Saturday; Arteta travels back to the Etihad Stadium to take on his former mentor Guardiola.

Sharing the ball

It was quickly evident that Arteta was working towards an improvement in Arsenal's playing style after replacing Unai Emery last December, and there has been no let up.

Since Arteta's first game at the helm on Boxing Day 2019, the Gunners have scored 11 Premier League goals following sequences of at least 10 passes – more than any other team in the top flight over the same period. That means over a quarter of all the Premier League goals scored by Arsenal under Arteta (40) have been preceded by a sequence involving a minimum of 10 passes.

City have accumulated just six such goals in the top flight over the same timeframe, while Arsenal's 11 has already matched their total from the entirety of Emery's tenure. Across all competitions the Gunners' haul rises to 14, which is still two more than Guardiola's side.

It appears clear that the possession-based, passing approach favoured and honed by Guardiola has rubbed off on Arteta. However, his team have also begun to prove themselves capable of impressing even without that ball.

On a run

The Gunners have averaged just 36.4 per cent possession in their past six games against 'big six' opposition in all competitions but have been defeated in only one of those matches – a 2-1 loss to Liverpool in the Premier League this season.

During that stretch Arsenal overcame City and Chelsea to win the FA Cup, while also beating Liverpool to the Community Shield and eliminating them from the EFL Cup, both in penalty shoot-outs.

Opta's expected goals (xG) model suggests it could well have been a different story, though. In those six games, Arsenal outperformed their xG (5.82) by two goals and the six they conceded was five fewer than their xG against (11.19).

So while Arteta's men have been on an impressive run against 'big six' opposition, the sustainability of that form can certainly be called into question. It will no doubt be hoped the signing of defensive midfielder Thomas Partey from Atletico Madrid for £45million will help them take a step towards achieving that.

Pep's Kryptonite

A factor that runs in Arsenal's favour ahead of the trip to the Stadium, however, is their use of a back three.

When faced with a three- or five-man defence, City tend to struggle. In their past 10 such matches, Guardiola's team have been defeated on five occasions – they have also lost three of their previous four.

The Gunners used a back three in their FA Cup semi-final against City in July and managed to seal a 2-0 victory despite only having 29 per cent of possession.

City were wasteful on that occasion, with only one of their 16 shots hitting the target. Arsenal had a quarter of the attempts on goal, but every single one required Ederson to make save. They only had an xG of 1.09 (City's was 1.68) but proved incredibly clinical and benefited from Guardiola's side failing to match them in that regard.

The Gunners will seemingly once again need to be deadly in front of goal and defend astutely for Arteta to get the better of his former mentor.

His plan for Arsenal and the influence of Guardiola is clear, but further improvement still appears to be required if they are to fully re-establish themselves among the Premier League's elite.

Barcelona won two Champions Leagues under Pep Guardiola only because of Lionel Messi's brilliance, according to former Bayern Munich boss Felix Magath.

The Catalans won their first treble of LaLiga, Copa del Rey and Champions League trophies in 2008-09, which was Guardiola's first season in charge.

They conquered Europe again two years later, again beating Manchester United in the final, to mark one of the finest periods in the club's modern history.

Guardiola, who left in 2012 after winning 14 major trophies, has been unable to win Europe's top trophy since.

He won three Bundesliga titles with Bayern but suffered three consecutive semi-final defeats in the Champions League, to Real Madrid, Barca and Atletico Madrid.

Similarly, he has enjoyed huge domestic success with Manchester City, winning two Premier League titles, one FA Cup and three EFL Cups, but he is yet to guide them beyond the quarter-finals in Europe.

Magath has called Guardiola's possession-based system into question, suggesting it worked at Barca "solely because of Lionel Messi, who can decide a game out of nowhere".

"Messi won the title, not Guardiola," he told Sport Bild.

"Without Messi, this system has never worked as successfully for Guardiola, otherwise he would have won the Champions League with Bayern or Manchester City long ago.

"Tiki-taka only works if you have players who are technically superior to their opponents. For the spectator, holding the ball, as I call it, is just boring and a top team doesn't really need it.

"In my opinion, Guardiola generally too often gets lost in trying to win a game in advance. That tactic often ends in wrong decisions, which prevent success."

City's Premier League title was wrestled away last season by Liverpool, who became champions of England for the first time in 30 years in manager Jurgen Klopp's fourth full season in charge.

Magath believes the Reds' success is more down to shrewd business in the transfer market than Klopp's system, however.

"Jurgen Klopp made the system a success primarily thanks to his decisions on personnel, not because of tactics," he said.

"If Liverpool hadn't reached into the coffers and bought goalkeeper Alisson for €60million and a defender in Virgil van Dijk for €85m, this system would also likely not have been successful.

"In the past, I'd have called it counter-attacking; today, it is called 'Gegenpressing'."

It was no real surprise to see Ruben Dias come straight into the Manchester City team for his Premier League debut at Leeds United.

Pep Guardiola's men were returning to league action for the first time since a humiliating 5-2 defeat at home to Leicester City last weekend – the centre-back pairing of Nathan Ake and Eric Garcia on that occasion were subsequently dropped.

Dias, a Portugal international, arrived from Benfica this week in a deal worth an initial £62million (€68m) following several months of speculation linking City with new centre-backs.

After being comfortably beaten to the Premier League title last term, Guardiola was certain what area of his team needed improving and he has been backed.

At Elland Road on Saturday, Dias did little wrong, but the match did highlight another issue with City's defence.

Dias a cool customer

The second half saw tactics pretty much go out of the window, a particularly novel and entertaining element of the encounter given it was a contest between two of the game's most highly thought of tacticians.

But Dias, put straight into the starting XI, was the embodiment of composure throughout.

He was right into the thick of it as well – Dias had a header from a corner deflected wide after just four minutes and then nodded agonisingly wide from another set-piece soon after.

His distribution, while by no means spectacular, was solid – his 82 per cent success rate an improvement on the 77 posted by Aymeric Laporte, who was the sloppier of the two City centre-backs.

Dias also showed his ease in possession after 34 minutes as he cut out a long ball by controlling with his thigh, before nudging possession off to Rodri despite being put under pressure – while not necessarily an incident for a highlight reel, it was one of numerous moments that suggested his suitability for City's style of play.

But defensively he was also solid, making a team-high four clearances and two blocks, one of which halted a Helder Costa delivery across the face of goal, subsequently winning a free-kick from the winger with a clever side-step in the immediate aftermath.

Mendy run ragged

Mendy did actually start the thrilling encounter well with some forward runs, but there was a hint of things to come just before half-time when the left-back's issues with concentration were laid bare.

The Frenchman attempted to bring down Kalvin Phillips' cross-field pass as he tracked back towards goal, but his relaxed touch was pounced upon by Luke Ayling, only for Ederson to bail out his full-back.

Half-time will have given him a chance to compose himself, but the start of the second period coincided with the introduction of former City youngster Ian Poveda.

Within a minute of his entry Poveda was straight at Mendy and Raheem Sterling, tricking his way past the latter before running at the former and getting a cross into the danger zone, which was met by Patrick Bamford who saw his effort deflected wide.

That was just a sign of things to come for Mendy and he was all over the place to the extent that he was withdrawn for centre-back Ake with 19 minutes to go.

One tackle and a solitary clearance was all Mendy managed in terms of defensive actions during his 71 minutes on the pitch, while he failed to deliver a single cross – given attacking output is considered his strong side, that is not a good look for him.

City are rumoured to be chasing another left-back, with Nicolas Tagliafico and David Alaba said to be targets, and on the evidence of this match it is easy to see why.

Substitutes change the game for Leeds

Leeds struggled initially, particularly in the first 20 minutes. Although they did improve until the break, the hosts still only managed four shots in the first period but then had double that after the interval.

Poveda was the first to be introduced and certainly made an impact, running at the City left flank almost every time he got the ball.

A January signing from City, Poveda won two fouls thanks to his direct style of play, while his one key pass had City on the back foot right at the start of the second period, setting the tone for Leeds' improvement.

The 20-year-old winger attempted six dribbles and completed four of them, highlighting the problem he posed Mendy and Sterling.

But he wasn't the only Leeds sub to test the visitors – Rodrigo Moreno was similarly lively off the bench, getting the equaliser as he reacted quickest to an Ederson error at a corner.

The Spain international looked in the mood as soon as he came on, with his first action seeing him run at Dias and work just enough space for a shot that took a slight deflection on to the crossbar and out for a corner – it was this set-piece, just three minutes after Rodrigo was brought on, that brought the Leeds goal.

He continued to be a pest, however, with the last of his three attempts forcing Ederson to tip his header on to the crossbar, while he also produced a couple of key passes – firstly teeing up Helder Costa, before then finding Bamford, who was denied by the City keeper.

Leeds won't always play against teams as open as City, but with schemers like Rodrigo – and, seemingly – Poveda, unlocking packed defences certainly won't be beyond them.

Pep Guardiola accepted a 1-1 draw was a fair result for Manchester City after they were pegged back by Leeds United at Elland Road.

Raheem Sterling gave a depleted City side the lead in the 17th minute, with the visitors dominating for the majority of the opening half of Saturday's Premier League fixture.

However, Leeds weathered the storm amid heavy rainfall and, after the break, caused their opponents problems. Eventually, Rodrigo equalised, the Spaniard capitalising on an error by visiting goalkeeper Ederson.

The two teams then went toe-to-toe in pursuit of a winner and while City were unable to score again, Guardiola was pleased with the performance, considering some of the key players missing.

"It was a good game, a fair result," Guardiola told Sky Sports. "We made an incredible 30 minutes when we could have scored more goals, but we could not.  

"We knew this was a team that, until the final whistle, they will be there. But my team, with the situation that we have, without pre-season and a lot of players out, they showed an incredible behaviour. 

"Unfortunately, we could not win, but we move on from here."

City were without forward duo Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus, as well as midfielder Ilkay Gundogan, though new signing Ruben Dias featured from the start following his arrival from Benfica.

On the performance of the team, Guardiola added: "We played a good game, a different game to ones we're used to - more up and down, more transitions.  

"In the first half, before they had the chances at the end, we had chances to kill the game.  

"In the second half it was a little more equal - there was a part when they were better, then in the last 10 or 15 minutes we were better as we tried to win the game."

Guardiola admitted it is "not easy" to play against Marcelo Bielsa's Leeds, who have impressed in the early stages of the 2020-21 season following their return to the top flight.

"They put a lot of players behind our midfield line, they attack incredibly quick with the quality of players they have, fast players outside," the City boss said. 

"It's not easy to play against them. I think all the teams they played this season so far, and last season in the Championship, they've shown how good they are."

Rodrigo capitalised on a bad mistake from Ederson to score his first goal for Leeds United and secure a 1-1 Premier League draw against Manchester City at Elland Road.

City, hammered 5-2 at home by Leicester City last weekend, made a blistering start in driving rain at Elland Road and Raheem Sterling deservedly put them in front.

Leeds grew into a pulsating contest, though, and record signing Rodrigo opened his account for the promoted side soon after coming on when goalkeeper Ederson made a mess of trying to deal with a corner.

Rodrigo also hit the crossbar twice as the Whites continued their impressive start to life in the top tier, although City felt they should have had a late penalty for a challenge on Sterling.

It meant Pep Guardiola and Marcelo Bielsa having to settle for a point apiece in a clash that was billed as the master against the apprentice.

Pep Guardiola has hailed new Manchester City signing Ruben Dias as "a natural leader" but insists he will not deviate from his preferred defensive system.

Dias joined City for an initial fee of £62million (€68m), with Nicolas Otamendi heading to Benfica as part of the deal, and he could make his Premier League debut against Leeds United on Saturday.

The centre-half's move was announced in the hours after City had lost 5-2 at home to Leicester City, marking the first time a Guardiola team had conceded five goals in a game in a coaching career spanning 686 matches.

The City boss warned Dias will need time to adjust to his new surroundings but is confident he will make a big difference when he is settled.

"We knew all about his personality before we tried to buy him," Guardiola told Sky Sports.

"He's not just a player with skills, he's a natural leader - you have to be to be captain of a team like Benfica, one of the greatest teams of all time in Europe, at 23. In a short time, he'll be captain of Portugal, too.

"He needs time - to know the players, to know the way we want to play, but he came here for six years; in that time he will become an important player for us."

City have spent in the region of £400million on defenders since Guardiola took charge in 2016, but defensive concerns over the past year have prompted doubts about their strength at the back.

They were punished for some suspect defending in their 2-1 FA Cup semi-final loss to Arsenal and 3-1 Champions League exit at the hands of Lyon last season, and they have kept only one clean sheet in their past six games in all competitions.

Concerns about the vulnerability of a high defensive line are not about to force Guardiola into a change, though.

"The high line has always been like this for me," he said. "My teams have conceded the fewest goals playing 40 metres away from our box. I've always believed the further you are from your goal, the less chance you have to concede.

"We have to control the counter-press as a team, we have to improve playing against the counter-attack. We have to have more passes to have more control in the game but I don't see it as a big issue right now. We didn't lose against Leicester because of the counter-attack.

"Every day I try to get the players believing in the message. Most of my backroom staff have remained the same and look what we've won in three seasons.

"If ever the players don't believe the message, it will be my fault. I have to keep doing my best to try and convince them. I know that when you're winning, everything you're doing is right, and when you lose, you have a problem. But they're pretty convinced by what we're doing."

City face Leeds United on Saturday, a team managed by Marcelo Bielsa, the man Guardiola says he admires the most "as a manager and also a person".

The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss also looks to Bielsa as a reason never to abandon your principles "not even in the bad moments".

"Whether your career is long or short, you have ups and downs, but never in the downs do I doubt about the players or the way I feel. Nobody can assure you of a victory, nobody can assure you with one idea that you will have success," he added.

"You have to believe in your own convictions."

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